“I want to be very clear with everyone, this shit wasn’t easy,” begins Jason Aalon Butler on letlive.’s upcoming and now completed fourth album.
The band, now officially a four-piece after the departure of Jean Nascimento at the start of the year, are hoping to release some new music in the first quarter of 2016, with the album out “sooner, rather than later.” The struggles in getting to this point go beyond their line-up changes though.
“We had so much shit written and so many ideas. At the same time putting it together and making it work between everyone’s artistic hunger took a while,” explains Jason. “That abounding creativity was a little stifling for us, sometimes because we all had different ideas. Putting it together as a unit may have been the most difficult part.”
"We couldn’t get out of each other’s way when we were trying to write this record because we had so many ideas."
— Jason Aalon Butler
“My whole life, especially musically, I’ve enjoyed so many different things about so many different types of music that, if anything, I’ve been overwhelmed by all the ideas I’ve wanted to incorporate. Us as a band, we all share so many different interests. I think that it’s always inevitable, even if it does create static or friction between us,” continues Jason on the band's ever expanding pool of influence.
“I’m not going to front, we butt heads and we argued. We couldn’t get out of each other’s way when we were trying to write this record because we had so many ideas. I’ll admit I had a very strong vision. I had something that I knew I wanted to hear and see. I found myself being rather stubborn with certain things. There comes a point where you have to realise that in order to move forward, we needed to get out of our own way. We had to really listen to what the songs wanted and how they wanted to be serviced. We did and it worked.”
‘Banshee (Ghost Fame)’ from ‘The Blackest Beautiful’ (2013)
“I definitely went in with some things to say. We’re going to come out with even more to say,” offers Jason of the album’s lyrical direction. Admitting he felt “the weight of societal affairs,” the record is set to look at the injustices that are happening locally in America and around the world. “We’re trying to spark something. We’re trying to advance the conversation really.”
Between the struggles of the world around them and the difficulties in balancing the abundance of ideas, letlive. have found a peace. Album four is “really good,” enthuses Jason. “If anyone has observed my interview history, when I discuss an album I’ll say ‘it’s an evolution’ or ‘it makes sense’ but I made a point to not say ‘it’s the best.’ I try not to overuse that expression - that sentiment - towards the music but this is easily the best we’ve ever done. I feel it’s the best musically we’ve ever done because it spans across every element we’ve tried to nod to in our previous albums and we’ve enhanced it. We’ve let go of any fear. The idea of a genre or the idea of what’s expected, you just have to abandon that idea, abandon those fears and just write music, which is what we did. That all being said, I think it’s a pretty good fucking album.”
letlive.'s as-yet-untitled new record will be out in 2016. Taken from the December / January issue of DIY, order a copy below.